The Beginner’s Guide To Powerlifting
Powerlifting is the fastest growing strength training sport in the world. The size and strength of the guys at the top of the Powerlifting game is truly mesmerising and awe inspiring for any weight training enthusiast. Powerlifters focus solely on developing the utmost strength level their bodies can achieve. And thus the size comes as a complimentary benefit. If you always wanted to be bigger, stronger – a beast in other words – Powerlifting is definitely the most conventional path to take.
In older times, people always respected men with gargantuan diets and immense physical strength. Powerlifting gives you this as it makes you more hardcore and rugged. When you are physically stronger, you have that self confidence working for you all the time and you feel like you can take on the world by yourself or any problem that you ever face. It gives you that kind of self confidence. This gift that powerlifting gives you is not only useful in the gym but also in your everyday life. That’s why focusing on enhancing strength is what one should do rather than those ab exercises and low calorie diets.
Since the sport of powerlifting in India hasn’t received any wide spread attention from the media, it’s not a mainstream sport to follow and hence people don’t care to know much about it although there are many powerlifters in India. They often confuse it with Olympic weightlifting, which is a completely different thing.
So what exactly is powerlifting? What happens in powerlifting competitions?
A powerlifting meet consists of a person attempting to complete these three lifts: The Bench Press, the Squat and the Deadlift. They get three tries on each of the following lifts. The lifts are executed in the following order in any sanctioned meet.
The Squat: Walk under a loaded bar. Set the bar on your back so that it is positioned on the rear deltoid, pushing your torso a little forward. This bar positioning is called “Low bar” and helps you to really balance the load on every muscle on the lower body, engaging your gluteus, hamstrings and lower back in the movement along with your quads more efficiently. Start with the bar positioned this way and feet wherever you feel like you can generate the most torque from. Descend to a position just below parallel rapidly and push the weight up to complete the movement.
The Bench press: Lie down on the bench with your feet on the ground. Then adjust your traps on the bench under the loaded bar to get a platform to lift off from. Then, bring your feet back so that your lower back is arched. With your arch in place, traps well settled and shoulder blades tucked close, ask the spotter to give you the lift off. Lower the bar on the chest, pause and then press the weight back up until your arms are extended.
The Deadlift: Set your feet preferably at the same position as you do for the squat, bend down at a 45 degree angle and grab the weight with an over- under grip. Then, rip the bar off the floor, keeping at as close as you can to your body, in a single pull.
Before you start destroying the heavy iron at your gym and getting stronger at powerlifting, keep in mind that like every sport, powerlifting has positives and negatives attached to it.
Here are some of the benefits of powerlifting:
Seeing that the three lifts involve more or less the entire body’s musculature, a person really needs to build up his entire body to put up a good total. That’s why for any powerlifter, increasing the strength of the entire body is foremost. Bodybuilding type workouts like dedicated arm training or shoulder training days are really rare in a power lifters training regimen. If you find Endless pump sets boring, lifting big and heavy is the perfect substitute for that, which is exactly what powerlifting offers.
It’s no secret that powerlifters’ diet involves eating BIG. This is not only essential to support your body’s heavy training, but also crucial to your success in powerlifting. You don’t necessarily have to be calorie conscious when powerlifting as you are going to be expending so much that you’ll always be hungry, no matter what.
Your entire workout scheduling has a definitive target that can never be changed: Getting Stronger. Hence, powerlifting offers a more focused approach to your gym experience. Also, it is really crucial that your form should be accurate in powerlifting, in order to generate maximum force and avoid injuries. That’s why powerlifters hone their technique first and then practice that forever. What it does is that it makes you habitual of training with correct form and hence would rarely be injured.
The good thing about powerlifting is that it gives your body a strong base over which you can construct a sturdy physique. Even if you think that competing in powerlifting is not the thing for you, you still can build a really good, muscular physique by first increasing your strength levels from powerlifting and then focusing on the pump in training. Powerlifting does have its cons or side effects too and we would like to highlight them here, so that you know what exactly you are getting into:
You might lose your agility and flexibility when in pursuit of absolute strength. Hence, it is not the thing for you if you want to avoid getting bulky and muscle bound. Also, you risk many types of injuries to your knee, lower back, shoulder etc. So, you need to be really careful with your form here as you are dealing with VERY heavy weights here.
Although you would possess immense physical strength, a good physique won’t necessarily entail that. Hence, if you want abs or want to get SHREDDED, it won’t suit you. Powerlifting is all about brute strength, not shredded obliques. Do expect to get huge in the process, but you won’t be fat free. Powerlifting is not a popular sport in India. Don’t expect to find really knowledgeable instructors easily. Also, it isn’t as rewarding as compared to other sports. In short, if you choose powerlifting as your sport, chances are that you will be on your own and help won’t come easily. So, be prepared for that. In conclusion, we believe everyone should try powerlifting training, regardless of their body type. You might even end up playing this sport at high levels as there is not much competition here.